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Last Updated on December 3, 2020

15 Quick Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle

15 Quick Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle

That person seems to have it all. You hate to admit it, but their effortless fitness and healthy life drive you mad all year round! What do they have that you don’t? You’ve tried the diets. You’ve done the workouts, what gives?

But what if you could BECOME that person too?

Don’t believe that’s possible? Let me explain.

I have always been an all or nothing type of person. There was one year where I drank something made entirely out of veggies for dinner for a month – a month! You heard me: I’m talking about a puke-worthy smoothie made entirely of spinach, kale, broccoli, and spinach. Gross.

After a while, I began to realize something extremely pivotal to my fitness journey: being all or nothing doesn’t work with having a healthy life.

Our bodies are delicate! Too few calories and too many workouts will literally spike cortisol and prevent you from losing weight. Too many calories and too few workouts and well, we’ve all been there.

So what am I getting at?

My point is that there are several secrets that these seemingly effortless fit people incorporate, knowingly or not, that greatly contribute to their health and wellness. The good news is, you can incorporate those things too!

Adding these “secret formulas” into my life is what helped me start losing weight, live a healthy life, and stop running myself purposely into the ground.

Curious what those things are? You’re in luck because as it happens, that is exactly what I’m about to show you!

1. Make It Fit Your Lifestyle!

This one I can’t stress enough!! If you find healthy food to fit into your lifestyle, you’re already a step ahead of the rest.

The key to getting fit effortlessly is to make it fit your lifestyle in a way you LOVE!! If you enjoy it and it’s easy, you’ll find yourself reaching your goals without even realizing it.

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2. Eat Foods High in Volume and Low in Calories

The technical term is food low in caloric density, but being the casual type of person I am, we’re going to stick to my term. So, what does this mean? It means eating foods that are low in calories but extremely filling.

Think veggies for instance. You could eat a massive pile of veggies and likely consume no more than a couple of hundred calories. This is where you can get creative! You can switch noodles out for protein noodles or veggie noodles. You can swap wraps for cauliflower wraps or a lettuce wrap.

You can essentially still enjoy all your favorite foods and still live a remarkably healthy life! Want to hear one of my favorite tricks?

3. Jello!

This one plays into my “low density” trick. One of my greatest secrets is actually Jello! It’s high in amino acids, extremely low in calories, and by replacing sugar with stevia, you’ll feel like your indulging for hardly any calories at all! Who knew?

4. Vacuum

This one is for anyone looking for a tight and sucked in stomach (“sucked in,” see what I did there?).

The Vacuum is an exercise you can incorporate anywhere. You simply pull your belly button towards your spine for a minute. Hold, and release.

This is one you can do while driving, sitting at work, or doing chores, so it’s completely effortless. It’s a secret that bodybuilders and bikini competitors used to use for that pulled in stomach.

5. Go Cold Turkey With Sugar

I know this might not seem effortless, and it’s not. But once it’s taken care of, life becomes a whole lot more simple.

According to an article by HealthLine, sugar is more addictive than cocaine.[1] And I believe it.

Sugar becomes an entirely different barrier for this reason. While most foods you can absolutely enjoy in moderation, a little sugar with sugar addiction can trigger poor habits. If you’ve found that it’s impossible to slowly cut out sugar and it’s constantly causing you to rebound, cutting it out entirely might be the way to go!

But here’s the good news – and I’m speaking from experience – once you get over the initial detox symptoms you’re cravings will nearly disappear. This will make choosing a healthy life far easier in the long run!

Speaking of run, I know you’re curious to hear more about workouts!

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6. Incorporate HIIT

You’ve probably already heard of HIIT by now. It stands for high-intensity interval training and is the key to short and powerful workouts. It boosts something called Excessive Post Oxygen Consumption (EPOC), which basically keeps you burning calories throughout the whole day![2])

These workouts are insanely powerful at getting results and hardly take any time. The key is when you are in a “working zone”, you’ve got to work it hard!

Be prepared, because on this next one I’m going to take a swing to the opposite side of the spectrum.

7. Low Stress

I bet you didn’t expect to see stress as part of this article at all. However, it is extremely important if you want to have a healthy life.

Some people think that the reason stress is detrimental is because it triggers overeating. But that’s only a small picture of the truth. There is so much more to fitness than “calorie in vs calorie out” like many would like to believe.

In truth, hormones that control our metabolism can play a major role. As this article from Medicinenet suggests, it can be extremely difficult to stay in shape with high cortisol[3], and I can attest to that!

Remember that season of drinking veggie smoothies I told you about? Yeah, that was accompanied by brutal runs and workouts. Let me tell you this. I didn’t lose a single pound.

Do you know when I did? I just started relaxing and enjoying a healthy and active lifestyle! “Work smarter, not harder” applies just as much to fitness as to any other area of life.

8. Leave Your Workout Clothes by Your Bed

I love to start the day with movement! And this is important in having a healthy life.

Sometimes I go to the gym or do yoga, while other days it’s a brisk walk with my favorite podcast. Either way, the best way to get your mind prepped is by setting up your workout clothes right by your bed for the morning.

It’s far easier to resist the urge to hit snooze when all of yesterday’s intentions are literally staring you in the face. Another trick is to keep an inspiring photo by your bed for a quick glint of morning inspiration.

Whether your goal is to be more energetic for your kids, get ready for an event, or just to prove to yourself that you can, waking yourself up with a dose of purpose will get you eager to make those goals a reality.

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9. Don’t Starve

I’m sure you’re glad to hear that! I’m sure you’ve heard before that crash diets don’t work. And that’s true, partially for the reason I mentioned above.

Your cortisol levels (the stress hormone) will spike whenever your body is stressed. That means if you are overworking and undereating, your body will stop losing weight.[4]

Another reason is that while most people will lose weight initially, a good portion of what is lost is muscles, which is responsible for burning more calories. That’s why many people find themselves gaining back the weight and then some, after a diet.

One of the most important things that people forget to do is fuel themselves for workouts. It’s ideal to eat some simple carbs before a workout, like a piece of fruit, to give you a rush of carbs that you can instantly burn into energy. After that, you’ll want to follow up with at least 30 grams of protein and 30 grams of carbs to replenish.

I know you might be thinking “what about all my hard work burning those calories off?” Trust me, the after-burn effect will still be working for you, and those nutrients are essential for keeping your metabolism up and your cortisol low!

But if you want to know how to eat what you want, then you’ll love the one below!

10. Intermittent Fasting

How does this come into play when I just mentioned you shouldn’t starve yourself? Well, Intermittent fasting has nothing to do with starving yourself! It simply has to do with eating within a certain time frame.

The one thing to note here is that regular intermittent fasting might not be ideal if you are a woman.[5] There are several hormones to keep in mind regarding gender. However, for the most part, fasting can be extremely effective.

11. Eat off of a Small Blue Plate

This one sounds crazy, but it’s scientifically proven. First off, our minds can find it hard to resist food sitting in front of us. In other words, if we have a large plate full of food, we’re more likely to eat it all until it’s done.

But what does the “Blue” have to do with anything?

The color blue is actually scientifically proven to be an appetite suppressant. Essentially, eating off of a blue plate will help reduce your cravings and make you feel satisfied much sooner!

12. Be Social

Want accountability? It might not be much farther than your phone. Hop on the social media bandwagon and get people rooting for your goals.

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There are dozens of platforms where you can reach your goals with other people just like you. Hearing their inspiration or having them hold you accountable can be a gamechanger! Of course, you can always find a workout buddy as well.

However, the key is to find someone who has already proven themselves consistent and accountable to their goals. I’ve seen too many friend groups come to the gym only to give up a couple of weeks later. It can be too hard to reach a resolution if your accountability is too flaky.

13. Drink a TON of Water!

This is probably one of the most important keys to having a healthy life. I mean it! If you drink a lot of water, I can almost guarantee you will see crazy results! Add some tea bags or fruit to flavor it, use lemon and stevia to make lemonade, or just guzzle it plain!

The best trick is to ALWAYS have a water bottle with you and ALWAYS be sipping. I tell my clients to get one with a straw attached. It’s easier to just sip from a straw then risk dumping water from an open-top bottle all over you!

One quick note though, don’t buy the “flavored water” trend. Contrary to popular belief, most sugar substitutes will actually make you gain weight. The only ones I truly trust are stevia and monk fruit, and even those I only use in moderation.

14. What Are You REALLY Craving?

Sometimes, a craving might be your body telling you something! Our bodies are brilliant, and our cravings can often just be a sign that we are missing something important.

Often, people who crave chocolate are just low in magnesium. A constant need for red meat might mean low iron. Sugar cravings could very likely just be a blood-sugar response signaling a need for more protein and healthy fats in your diet.[6]

If you have specific cravings, then you might benefit from taking a look at the root cause of them. Don’t ignore it when your body is trying to get your attention, but don’t give in to its first reaction either.

Discover what your body truly needs, and fix the problem, not the symptom.

15. Enjoy the Journey

I’m going to end very similarly to how I started. Find enjoyment in a healthy and active lifestyle, and you will get to your goals! It’s okay if you don’t like salads or running.

Find something that works for you! Burning calories in a fun way and eating meals that remind you of your favorites will be a gamechanger for you! Make “copycat” recipes your best friend so you can enjoy those indulgences healthily. And don’t freak out about the destination.

If you are consistent with the process, I promise you will reach your goals in no time.

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Final Thoughts

There you have it, 15 quick tips for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Some of them might be easier for you than the others, but the key is for you to be focused and determined in living a healthy life.

More Tips for a Healthy Life

Featured photo credit: NordWood Themes via unsplash.com

Reference

More by this author

Katelyn Delaney

Owner of Revifi -- Fitness Training & Life Coaching

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Published on July 14, 2021

13 Best Foods to Eat at Night (Advice From a Health Coach)

13 Best Foods to Eat at Night (Advice From a Health Coach)

We’ve all had late-night cravings. Those times when you would lie in bed but your mind is on the fridge. You try to fight it, but you find out that you can’t. Food—you want food—to chew and to drink and to swallow. It usually goes this way: after much hesitation, you would get off your bed and walk over to the kitchen where you would stand for seconds and maybe even minutes contemplating a lot of things.

You have heard about it—read about it, too—the famous “eating late at night isn’t good for you.” You know well about how eating late at night can cause you stress and make you gain weight. But you just want to eat—and eat you must.

But what must you eat? What are your best and most healthy options? Here are the 13 best foods to eat at night.

1. Turkey

If you aren’t a vegetarian, then you most probably love turkey. It is not only very tasty and delicious, but it is quite nutritious, too. Turkey contains a lot of protein. As little as 28 grams of turkey already contains eight grams of protein.[1]

It also contains some amount of vitamins and a nutritive compound called selenium. Selenium is a powerful antioxidant that plays an important role in ensuring the thyroid gland functions properly.

Turkey passes as one of the best foods to eat at night because the protein tryptophan, which it contains in a considerable amount, is believed to promote tiredness and thus, sleepiness.[2]

2. Fish

Another great choice for non-vegetarians is fish, especially fatty fishes like salmon, tuna, and mackerel. These are considered healthy choices because they contain a considerable amount of Vitamin D. Vitamin D helps your body regulate its calcium levels and is good for your kidneys, parathyroid glands, skin, etc.

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Fatty fishes also contain omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are a group of healthy fatty acids that can serve as anti-inflammatory agents and are good for the brain. Omega-3 fatty acids are shown to be able to increase the amount of serotonin produced by the nervous system, and thus, make sleep feel better.[3] This means that fishes would not keep you awake! You don’t have to roll from side to side trying to fall asleep after eating them.

Fishes also contain nutritive oils that are good for your body and skin.

3. White Rice

White rice is just rice that has no bran germ—that is, both bran and germ have to be removed as a result of processing from brown rice to make it white rice. This removal of bran and germ causes white rice to contain lower fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants when compared with brown rice. However, white rice still contains a commendable amount of nutrients such as thiamine, folate, and manganese and so is great as a late-night meal.

White rice has a high Glycemic Index. (GI). A food’s glycemic index is simply the measure of the rate at which that food increases the body’s sugar level. Taking in foods with a GI index, such as rice, can improve the quality of one’s sleep. This is as long as one takes these foods one hour before sleep. If you plan to sleep by 7 p.m, then it is a good idea to eat white rice by 6.p.m.[4]

4. Bananas

Finally, Something for vegetarians. A fruit! Bananas not only taste good, but they are also rich in the compounds potassium and tryptophan, making them one of the best foods to eat at night.

Tryptophan, as earlier stated, is an essential protein that plays a role in relaxation. Some bananas before meals can improve the quality of your sleep. Plus, they contain vitamins and are rich in antioxidants. They also contain compounds that are capable of making bowel movements easier.

5. Cheese and Crackers

Cheese and crackers, crackers being a source of carbohydrates and cheese a source of tryptophan, can help balance the body’s sugar level. When you take cheese and crackers together, more tryptophan is made available to your brain.[5] The sugar in cheese feeds your brain, and tryptophan helps with the production of melatonin.

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This means that there would be more serotonin and melatonin production in your nervous system when you take cheese and crackers together. Serotonin improves the quality of a person’s sleep.

6. Warm Cereals

Cereals are great sources of fiber. Ones like oats also contain an impressive amount of melatonin, which improves sleep.

Before bed, a hot bowl of cereal and maybe even whole grains are a good choice. They do not contain a lot of calories and would most likely not keep you awake.

7. Yoghurt

Yogurt tastes good, and kids and adults love them. They are also a rich source of calcium. Calcium is an essential mineral to the body. It is necessary for the growth of bone and teeth, and skeletal, smooth, and cardiac muscles need it for muscular contractions to happen.

Your body also needs calcium to produce melatonin from tryptophan. If calcium levels are low, there will be a reduced rate of production of melatonin—and thus, low quality sleep. Yogurt also contains casein. Casein is believed to reduce early morning hunger.

Unsweetened yogurt is a great snack and one of the best foods to eat at night.

8. Eggs

Eggs are great sources of protein and don’t contain many calories. As a late-night snack, eggs are a great pick. They are easy to cook and can go along with many different kinds of snacks.

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Eggs also contain tryptophan, which—as you must now already know—can improve the quality of one’s sleep.

9. Protein-Pineapple Smoothie

As you may have noticed, most of the snacks and foods on this list of best foods to eat at night are protein-rich foods. Protein-rich meals taken around bedtime can boost muscle repair. They can also combat age-related muscle mass loss especially in people who frequently exercise.

As a late-night snack, you can blend some pineapple pieces into milk. Milk is a great source of the protein tryptophan from which the body produces melatonin. Pineapples do not contain a lot of calories and might not prove a threat to your body’s normal digestive functions. Pineapples can also boost your body’s serotonin levels.[6]

10. Tart Cherries

Juices made from tart cherries are great alongside other snacks, such as crackers and cheese. Tart cherries have anti-inflammatory effects. Even though in small quantities, tart cherries contain the sleep hormone melatonin. They also contain procyanidin B-2, which is believed to keep stable the essential amino acid tryptophan.[7]

Tart Cherries have low calories, too. This means that they are not too heavy and do not pose the threat of fat deposition, and they would not keep you awake.

11. Honey

Honey harvested from bees is nutritious and does not contain a lot of calories. It is known to be capable of increasing the production of melatonin in one’s body.[8]

It also contains healthy sugars, such as fructose and glucose, and can have a healthy effect on your body’s sugar level. Honey is one of the best food to eat late at night.

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12. Popcorn

When it isn’t swathed in sugar and milk and other fatty stuff, popcorn presents as a great late-night snack. Popcorn is a low-calorie snack and contains a rich amount of fiber.[9] High-fiber grains are believed to lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers.

Also, popcorn contains polyphenols. Polyphenols are antioxidants believed to improve circulation and in general, health.

13. Baked Sweet Potato Fries

French fries are amazing. They taste so good. Do you like french fries? Then baked sweet potato fries are a great pick you might want to consider.

As a late-night snack, you can very well bake sweet potatoes instead of frying them. They are easier to prepare when baked and do not contain so much fat. Sweet potatoes contain a good quantity of fiber and vitamins.[10]They also contain some great amounts of protein.

Final Thoughts

When next you have the craving for a late-night meal, you should know that not all meals are great when eaten at night. Some are about right, and others could contribute to excessive weight gain, heart diseases, digestive disorders, and other health issues.

Have you ever woken up with swollen eye bags, felt nauseous, or had malaise after a late-night meal? Then it’s possible the meal was not a great pick.

When choosing the best meals and snacks to eat at night, you should choose meals that contain low calories—not more than 200 calories—and have high protein content. Proteins like tryptophan enhance the quality of sleep. Some of these foods include eggs, turkey, cheese, bananas, yogurt, juices, etc.

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Remember, eating healthy is a great way to remain healthy.

More Healthy Snacks Options

Featured photo credit: K15 Photos via unsplash.com

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