Muffin tops: my taste buds love them, but my jeans hate them!

I lead a workout class on Tues & Thurs mornings. So many times gals come to me asking “how can I get guns like so and so?” or “how can I lose this muffin top?” or “I work out every day, how come I’m not seeing any changes?” To this I have a one word answer:

DIET.

Not as in Atkins, SouthBeach, or even low-carb. I am definitely NOT telling these women to go on a diet. I am telling them that our diet (as in what we eat) effects our body shape more than how much we work out. You can work out 6 hours a day, but if you go home and eat crap (sugar, over processed foods, etc..) then it negates all that exercise.

So how do you know what you should eat and what to avoid? How do you know where to start? What’s right for you might not be right for your best friend. There are two options that I tell the gals about:

1. Take out one bad food item at a time

For this you choose one bad item per week to take out. Some options to start with:

-sugar: refined, white sugar. Keep the fruit, keep the local, raw honey. Lose the confectioners (powdered) sugar, the granulated sugar, lose the agave nectar, and please lose the corn syrup!  These things spike your insulin, then it comes crashing down making you crave more and more. That is why they are in EVERYTHING!  So you eat them, feel satisfied, crash, eat more. You run out, you buy more, and the cycle goes on.

-white bread items: pasta, bread, muffins, bagels; lose them all. Just as sugar spikes your insulin, so do these! Did you know that you can be addicted to carbs? If you are seriously addicted, then go read this from Dr. Oz on how to kick your carb addiction. If you are not addicted, then take out one item at a time. Instead of refined white items, opt for sprouted grains, quinoa, and green veggies. These all have protein to keep you satisfied and won’t leave you tired and cranky when you don’t have them.

2. Cut out all processed foods, cold turkey.

This option is hard, I won’t lie! My husband and I tried the Paleo lifestyle a few years back. In a nutshell (pun intented!) all we would eat was meat, fruit, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. No dairy, no refined carbs, no legumes. About 4-5 days into it, we had horrible headaches, were exhausted, and cranky! But that only lasted a couple of days and then we started feeling great! After about 6 weeks we noticed that our bodies were craving the good stuff…protein, green veggies, fruits. Paleo is pretty extreme, and to be honest, we have decided it wasn’t the lifestyle for us. One of my dearest friends taught us about it, and she and her husband absolutely love it. It works awesome for them. This is why no one “diet” is perfect for everyone and there is no miracle diet.

A good way to start this option is to cut out any foods that come in a box. The only exception I will give you is if in that box there is one ingredient, ie: oatmeal, flax seed, etc.. If you look at a box and you can’t pronounce any ingredient, run!! Throw that box and run away!! Okay, not literally but you get the idea.

Have I overwhelmed your brain yet? Yes? That’s ok. Pick one spot and start there. Not overwhlemed? Great! Go plan your next grocery shopping list and let me know what healthy choices you are going to make!!

Need recipe ideas??  Follow me on Pinterest and check out my healthy recipe and paleo boards. They have great ideas of easy recipes your whole family will love.

I leave you with this:

 

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Hugs!

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