* This is part of a year-long series called "52 Weeks to Eating better than Ever". Click on the side bar for more information and to read the previous essays.
Focus on getting your food at home straightened out first. Then move from there to work, to travel situations, and then get every other situation under control. The key is to start small and build up. For you, starting to eat a healthy breakfast of egg whites, fruit, and yogurt may be a big change. Start will small wins at home and build momentum.
Eat mostly at home generally if you can.You will almost always eat less and better if you eat at home. Restaurants use a hefty dose of fat, sugar, and salt, because these things make food tasty and addictive, and keep you coming back. Keep plenty of fresh water and low calorie snacks on hand.
Remove most everything at home that isn’t good for you. Keep some fruits and dried fruits (though they can be pretty high in sugar), and some yogurt in case you crave something sweet. Otherwise, get rid of the chips, the cookies, and all the high calorie, low nutrient foods from your house. And save the alcohol for special occasions.
Once you get home under control, take care of what you eat at work. Start bringing your lunch to work, and bringing healthy snacks for work, to save money and to keep your weight healthy. Start to install the same healthy habits you acquired at home on the job. It will come second nature at this point, with all the momentum you have gained at home first.
Now plan ahead for travel. What will you eat? What is your plan to stay healthy while traveling? Focus on drinking plenty of water, and primarily on making healthy side choices and controlling portions.
Finally, straighten out other issues that affect you. This could include business meetings, emotional eating, bad influences, friends or family who don’t want you to change, and client dinners or group lunches with friends. How can you start to make small changes everywhere else? What are the boundaries you need to set in all of these situations?
Change is always hard. We are creatures of habit, including bad ones. We need to think small and be patient. Take small wins and over time transfer many small healthy habits into a lifetime of healthier eating and living. Little things add up, and wins close to home build the kind of momentum you need to expand outwards into a lifestyle shift.
Focus on home and build from there.
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