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Eat Healthy Without Feeling Deprived

A common misconception about eating healthy is the belief that it means deprivation.

So many times I hear clients and others say, ‘I love (fill in the blank) but I won’t be eating that anymore.’



And my response is always – Everything in moderation.


Telling yourself you can never eat certain foods is setting yourself up for failure. It’s not realistic to expect yourself to never to eat something you love. And then, when you do, you’ll probably feel bad about yourself and may even throw in the towel completely on your positive changes.


Instead, know that you can eat whatever you love. But it may not be as frequently or in the quantities that you’re eating it now.


Keep reading for some more great tips on not feeling deprived when trying to create healthy eating habits.


1. Make sure you’re getting both fiber and protein at every meal. Fiber and protein have fewer calories than fats, fill you up


and keep you full. They’re digested slowly so you don’t experience the blood sugar spikes of quickly digested simple carbs and sugars.


2. Speaking of fiber, be sure you’re eating fruits and veggies. They’re packed with fiber, usually contain very few calories, and fill you up so you don’t need as much higher calorie food. Plus, they’re full of nutrition.


3. Don’t let yourself get too hungry. When we’re hungry, we lose all willpower to make healthy choices. Plan your meals, making sure to always have access to food before you’re starving. Eat breakfast so you can make it through the morning, and think ahead to what you’ll have available for snacks, lunch and dinner. It’s so much easier to make healthy choices when we’re not already famished.


4. Be aware of your portions. Too large portions are right at the top when it comes to causes of weight gain. Oftentimes, my clients are making all the right choices about what to eat, without being aware of how much they’re eating. Overeating healthy foods will still cause weight gain.


5. Exercise. Weight loss happens when we burn more calories than we consume. To change that balance without severely limiting calories, get some activity in to make changes on the other side of the equation.


6. Stay hydrated. Oftentimes, thirst feels like hunger. Drinking water may be all it takes to satisfy you. Adding some fresh fruit for flavor can help, too, and is a good alternative to high calorie beverages.


7. Keep yourself out of harm’s way. If you know you’re triggered by certain events, emotions, or actions, do what you can to avoid them or redirect yourself. Recognizing them is the first step to creating new healthy patterns.


Eating healthy and in moderation doesn’t need to be painful. Make small changes to begin and give yourself a pat on the back when you do so.


If I can help you, be sure to let me know!

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Karen Marcouiller

Personal Trainer and Health Coach

National Sports and Conditioning Association (NSCA)

American Council on Exercise (ACE)

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