Work can be full of unhealthy diet traps: donuts or bagels in the morning, skipped lunches, and afternoon sugar cravings can lead you straight to the vending machine. Did you know that the peak use of vending machines is between 2-5pm?
Here are 5 tips on sticking with healthy food choices and avoiding vending machine:
1. When you pack your lunch, pack the snacks! (for a few days ahead)
Snacks can be packed for a few days ahead, and you can store them in the office, so that they are within arm's reach, when you start getting cravings in the afternoon. Some ideas for snacks:
2. Drink water
Take a gulp of water every time you feel like heading towards a vending machine. Water will fill you up long enough until you can get home for dinner. Be cautious of juices, soda, or coffee. These options can be high in calories and sugar.
3. Relax you mind during a stressful day
Stress and unhealthy eating usually go together. When you get into a stressful moment at work - get up, go for a walk, talk to a colleague, or call a friend. Changing your environment and taking the mind off the situation will distract you from a desire to eat.
4. Have backup option of meal replacement shake (Example Advocare)
Always having a few packets of meal replacement or protein shakes can save you from the vending machine. The shake and meal packet option provide needed nutrition and satisfy sugar cravings with the variety of flavors.
5. Choose the lesser of the 2 evils
If all of the above options fail and your only survival option is a vending machine, you need to know which items in it are healthier than the others. According to Fitness Magazine; here are the 10 snacks from the vending machine which are comparably healthier than an average candy bar:
1. Planters Sunflower Kernels (1/4 cup)
160 calories, 14g fat, 1.5g sat fat, 4g fiber
The Bottom Line: Full of healthy fats
2. Baked! Lays Original
210 calories, 3g fat, 0g sat fat, 4g fiber
The Bottom Line: Surprisingly fiber-full
Other Smart Snacks
3. Sun Chips Original
140 calories, 6g fat, 1g sat fat, 2g fiber
The Bottom Line: Made of whole grains
4. Snyder's of Hanover Mini Pretzels (20)
110 calories, 0g fat, 0g sat fat
The Bottom Line: Naturally fat-free
5. Smartfood Reduced-Fat Popcorn
120 calories, 5g fat, 1g sat fat, 2g fiber
The Bottom Line: Low fat, and has fiber!
6. Peanut M&M's
250 calories, 13g fat, 5g sat fat, 2g fiber
The Bottom Line: Just don't go nuts
7. Fig Newtons
190 calories, 0g fat, 0g sat fat, 2g fiber
The Bottom Line: It's fruit!
8. Nature Valley Granola Bar, Oats & Honey
180 calories, 6g fat, 0.5g sat fat, 2g fiber
The Bottom Line: Beats hunger
9. Planters Honey Roasted Peanuts (39)
160 calories, 13g fat, 1.5g sat fat, 6g protein
The Bottom Line: High in protein
10. Quaker Chewy Low-Fat Granola Bar, Chocolate Chunk
110 calories, 2g fat, 0.5g sat fat, 1g fiber
The Bottom Line: Guilt-free chocolate
Starting a healthy lifestyle can be a challenge in the beginning, especially if members of your household are not on-board. While success is still possible, it's important to encourage your family and other close friends to join you so the lifestyle can feel easy for the years ahead. Here are a few tips to consider:
Tell them what you've learned. It can be exciting to make new, healthy changes and to stay accountable to your plan, it helps to talk about it. Plus, learning new information and wanting to share it is fun. When it comes to encouraging others to get healthy with you, focus on what you've learned instead of criticizing what they should be doing. Focus on being positive. For example, you could say: "I have started eating vegetables at every meal the past few weeks and I've learned I no longer feel tired after a meal." Something to avoid saying is: "You know you should be eating multiple servings of vegetables a day for stable energy." By stating what you've learned and how it's improved your life opens the door for your friends and family to see if they are interesting in joining with you.
Focus on talking about what you're eating instead of what you're not eating. If you start a conversation with "I'm not eating sugar, pasta, bread, processed foods or alcohol because those foods are terrible for you," you will make them feel uncomfortable. They also might think you're judging them if those foods are currently in their diet. Instead, keep it positive by saying, "I've been eating lots of roasted vegetables, frittatas, fresh fruit, grilled fish and enjoy making easy crockpot recipes." These statements make a person feel completely different and are non-judgmental.
Sneak in the good stuff. This can be a really good trick for picky eaters. Sometimes the thought of broccoli for kids or adults can automatically have a reaction of "yuck!" By finely chopping vegetables into your current recipes, your family may not even notice it, yet they are reaping the nutritional benefits. Sneaking spinach or other leafy greens can also work well in smoothies. If you decide to tell them your tricks, they may be excited to know they like it!
Make it a fun activity. Healthy food can be fun. Get your family involved by having them help you plan a meal. Kids may really enjoy this activity. You could also plan a BBQ or dinner party for your friends and family. Be in charge of the menu and surprise them with your healthy favorites! They may be asking for the recipes afterwards.
Always remember that this is your journey. Encouraging others is important, but unfortunately we can't make decisions for others. Lead by example, keep positive thoughts flowing, and before you know it, you may just have those people following in your footsteps.
Shine Fitness | Bellevue, WA | - "We Are All Meant To Shine" | Shinefit.com
Join us at Shine for an informational seminar on June 25th, 6:30 pm. We will be kicking off a 24 day Challenge next month! Participate in the AdvoCare 24 Day Challenge to lose 10 lbs and 10 inches in 24 days!
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