Tuesday, June 10, 2014

The Yes/No list, an easier way to eat healthier

I am like a lot of people in that my caloric intake is sometimes hard for me to measure correctly.  In layman's terms, that means I often eat way too much and sometimes stuff that is not good for me.  Over the course of the last couple months, I have been trying to devise a simpler way to eat healthy and maintain some sort of balance so I am not confined to eating twigs and berries.  There are a million diets, eating plans, etc.  What I have decided though, is that just like different training plans make sense for different runners, different eating plans make sense for people.

Because of this, I wanted to come up with a way for people to customize their own eating plan.  I don't have anything earth shattering here.  For me, it comes down to a Yes/No list.  I eat stuff on the yes list and avoid stuff on the no list.  Here is what a section of my yes/no list looks like:


YES

Fat Free Milk                     
Eggs                                
Almond/Peanut Butter
Crumb Cake
Bagels
Bananas, Apples
Berries
Veggies
Yogurt
Pizza
Burgers
Gatorade/Powerade 
Pretzels
Steak
NO

Diet Soda
Green Beans
Brownies
Salmon
Cookies
Chips
Sweet Potatoes
Cake
Alcohol
Butter








First, this is only a section of it.  Second, you shouldn't see alcohol and butter on my no column and say, "forget it!"  This is my list, not yours.  It is meant to be customized.  I have bagels, pretzels, and crumb cake on my list.  Sorry, have to.  Maybe you hate all three.  It is meant to be personalized.  Also, the idea of the list helps you hold yourself accountable.  I don't like cake, so why do I eat it?  Usually, because it's there.  Forget it, it's a no.  Again, this is a sample of my list.  Also, you can be more compulsive if you want and break it down by food groups or not.  For me, it's a reminder.  I know what is on my list and for those foods I haven't categorized that come up, I figure it out and add it.  

My mouth is watering!
Start a list on a post it, on a stickie on your computer, a note on the iPhone, whatever.  There are two keys to this list idea in my mind.  First, include foods that are good for you and not so good on the yes side, and on the no side.  Some people eat things they hate, just because it's good for them.  Talk about setting yourself up for failure.  Plain greek yogurt is great for you.  However, I would rather punch myself in the face than eat it.  It's gross, to me.  Do not force it.  The second point is, everything in moderation.  I have crumb cake on my Yes side.  That doesn't mean a whole crumb cake.  That also doesn't mean crumb cake everyday.  

This is my way of holding myself accountable for what I eat.  I also think it is easily adaptable for others as well.


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