Ask a Health Coach: How to Stop the Cycle of Overdoing It
Hi folks, in this edition of Ask a Health Coach, Erin helps her over-do classmates with strategies to deal with the hectic mindset, overthinking calories, and enjoying the vacation guilt-free. You have questions? Share them in the comments or in our MDA Facebook Group. Cassie asked: “I always burn the candle at both ends to […]

mom busy cooking holding childHi folks, in this edition of Ask a Health Coach, Erin helps her over-do classmates with strategies to deal with the hectic mindset, overthinking calories, and enjoying the vacation guilt-free. You have questions? Share them in the comments or in our MDA Facebook Group.

Cassie asked:

“I always burn the candle at both ends to make sure everyone is happy this time of year, but I can already tell that I'm exhausting myself. How to spend the holidays without needing a vacation afterwards?

Doing too much is kind of my specialty. At least that has been the case in the past, so I fully understand where you are coming from. If you are like me you have a long history of being very productive and carrying a huge Honor badge about that. The more commotion, the better. The less rest, the better. Even to the point of burning completely.

You could also be a little people are pleasing, which by definition suggests that you have a deep emotional need to please others at the expense of your own needs. For many of my clients, the desire to please is related to their self-esteem and the need for external approval and validation. And he is always put to the test during the holidays. By making sure everyone's dietary preferences are respected at dinner or getting the “perfect” decorations, they feel more worthy, sympathetic and accepted.

Keep in mind that pleasing people is not the same as being a good host.

To others, it seems like you are really kind and accommodating - and I have no doubt in my mind that you are. But being useful at the expense of your own health and happiness is not a good compromise if you ask me

If you've always felt compelled to put everyone's needs before your own, it's hard to imagine it being any different, since pleasing people isn't just what you do, it's a big part of who you think you are.

Here is the good news, however. The fact that you are aware that you are doing these things is a sign that you are open to change. So here are some strategies you can start practicing right away:

1. Understand what you are and what you are not responsible for. If you are hosting, providing food and conversation is probably in your wheelhouse of responsibility; However, taking on the burden of making sure your guests are happy every second of their visit isn't.

2. Determine your limits and rest assured about them. Do you really agree with making four kinds of potatoes or having people stay later than you want? Be clear about your limits and practice sticking to them. And remember, being assertive can be scary at first, but it's worth it in the long run.

3. Know that everything will be fine. If 2020 has taught us anything, it's that the world is a crazy and unpredictable place and that no planning or satisfaction can guarantee a perfect result.

I think you will find that when you break free from the rigidity of hardcore pushing and people having fun, you start to feel your own state of flux. Heck, you might even be enjoying the holidays this year.

Jason asked:

“I want to enjoy the holidays without feeling guilty. I'm fed up with everyone posting healthy versions of desserts and drinks. Can't I just have the real thing without being ashamed?

I have the impression that you are thinking a little too much about it. Yes, you can absolutely eat whatever you want. Who is stopping you? There is no keto policy. And no one will pull your paleo card if you indulge in eggnog pecan pie.

Eat whatever you want, I don't care. The problem is, I think you care. Maybe you care what other people think. Or you care about how it will affect your goals.

I'm not here to tell you to eat a whole sheet of sugar cookies or not, I'm just here to help you have a simpler relationship with food. The one where you have a solid understanding of how certain foods work or don't work in your body. That way, you are free to make choices that support you or that don't. Which is totally okay too, provided you are clear about the consequences, which can range from feeling sluggish and foggy to pants that don't fit.

It's always your call.

That said, if someone makes you ashamed of your choices, that's a whole different topic. Food has become so controversial and everyone likes to point fingers at anyone with a different health ideology than their own.

Here's a note to all your shamers: if you've decided to eat more plants, more meat, less sugar, less carbs, zero carbs, or all carbs, remember that everyone is different and your beliefs don't need to be spread over someone else's. Ok, rant.

If you are metabolically flexible, affording yourself a few "real" goodies won't be a big deal. While you are spending the holidays, keep the 80/20 frame with the Primal lifestyle in mind. While not meant to support cheat days, it is all about navigating real life.

Cheri asked:

“I'm thinking about adding a few more workouts per week so that I can indulge in some holiday treats without compromising my progress. What are your favorite exercises to burn extra calories? "

Diet culture has certainly done something to us, hasn't it? Weighing, calorie counting, macro tracking, step tracking, making sure you burned more calories than you consumed… it's just too much. And don't get me started on those calculators that tell you how many crunches or jumps or hours of cardio you need to do to burn off everything you've eaten.

I'm fed up with artificial nutrition and fitness messages. It keeps us stuck in the pattern of deprivation and all the ways we're not good enough - or worse yet, how * good * we will be when we reach a certain weight or pant size..

So no. I don't have a calorie burner. And I certainly don't have any low calorie diet recipes. What I have are tips on how to boost your metabolism and stop worrying about how you present yourself aesthetically to the world.

Sounds like a great gift, right? You don't care? Not planning additional training sessions to welcome the holidays? The diet mindset has been built into a lot of us and one of my goals as a health coach is to help people get by. And it starts with three key elements:

1. Release judgment on food. Food is neither good nor bad, it just has consequences. If you have a few treats, you might have a sugar crash followed by more food cravings. If you eat a meal that is high in protein, you may not need to skip the candy dish.

2. Learn to listen to your body. Try to tune in to what your body is telling you Learn to recognize your body's hunger and thirst, and to separate physical hunger from emotional needs such as comfort and personal growth.

3. Check your limiting stories and beliefs. Think you're only adorable at a certain weight? Or that "treating" yourself is a bad thing? Pay attention to stories that you tell yourself and see if you can turn them into a more positive light.

Do you have a habit of doing too much? You have more questions? Share in the comments below.


About the Author

Power Erin

Erin Power is the Coaching and Curriculum Director for Primal Health Coach Institute. She also helps her clients to regain a loving and trusting relationship with their bodies - while restoring their metabolic health, so they can lose fat and gain energy - through her own health coaching practice. private, eat.simple.

If you have a passion for health and wellness and a desire to help people like Erin does for her clients every day, consider becoming a Certified Health Coach yourself. Learn the 3 Simple Steps to Building a Successful Health Coaching Business in 6 Months or Less in this special information session moderated by Mark Sisson, co-founder of PHCI.

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It’s easy to get confused when it comes to health and alimentation. Even qualified experts often seem to hold opposing opinions. Yet, despite all the disagreements, a number of wellness tips are well supported by research. Here are 27 health and nutrition tips that are actually based on good technique.

These 8 practical tips cover the basics of saine eating and can help you make healthier choices.

The key to a healthy diet is to eat the right amount of calories for how active you are so you balance the energy you consume with the energy you use.

If you eat or drink more than your body needs, you’ll put on weight because the energy you do not use is stored as fat. If you eat and drink too little, you’ll lose weight.

You should also eat a wide range of foods to make sure you’re getting a balanced diet and your body is receiving all the nutrients it needs.

It’s recommended that men have around 2, 500 calories a day ( 10, 500 kilojoules ). Women should have around 2, 000 kcal a day ( 8, 400 kilojoules ). Most adults in the UK are eating more kcal than they need and should eat fewer calories.

Starchy carbohydrates should make up just over a third of the food you eat. They include potatoes, bread, rice, pasta and cereals. Choose higher fibre or wholegrain varieties, such as wholewheat pasta, brown rice or potatoes with their skins on.

They contain more fibre than white or refined starchy carbohydrates and can help you feel full for longer. Try to include at least 1 starchy food with each main meal. Some people think starchy foods are fattening, but gram for gram the carbohydrate they contain provides fewer than half the kcal of fat.

Keep an eye on the fats you add when you’re cooking or serving these genres of foods because that’s what increases the calorie content – for example, oil on chips, butter on bread and creamy sauces on pasta.

It’s recommended that you eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and veg every day. They can be fresh, frozen, canned, dried or juiced. Getting your 5 A Day is easier than it sounds. Why not chop a banana over your breakfast cereal, or swap your usual mid-morning snack for a piece of fresh fruit ?

A portion of fresh, canned or frozen fruit and vegetables is 80g. A portion of dried fruit ( which should be kept to mealtimes ) is 30g. A 150ml glass of fruit juice, vegetable juice or smoothie also counts as 1 portion, but limit the amount you have to no more than 1 glass a day as these drinks are sugary and can damage your teeth.

You can choose from fresh, frozen and canned, but remember that canned and smoked fish can be high in salt. Most people should be eating more fish, but there are recommended limits for some variétés of fish.

You need some fat in your diet, but it’s important to pay attention to the amount and type of fat you’re eating. There are 2 main types of fat : saturated and unsaturated. Too much saturated fat can increase the amount of cholesterol in the blood, which increases your risk of developing heart disease.

On average, men should have no more than 30g of saturated fat a day. On average, women should have no more than 20g of saturated fat a day. Children under the age of 11 should have less saturated fat than adults, but a low-fat diet is not suitable for children under 5.

Try to cut down on your saturated fat intake and choose foods that contain unsaturated fats instead, such as vegetable oils and spreads, oily fish and avocados. For a healthier choice, use a small amount of vegetable or olive oil, or reduced-fat spread instead of butter, lard or ghee.

When you’re having meat, choose lean cuts and cut off any visible fat. All types of fat are high in energy, so they should only be eaten in small amounts.

Regularly consuming foods and drinks high in sugar increases your risk of obesity and tooth decay. Sugary foods and drinks are often high in energy ( measured in kilojoules or kcal ), and if consumed too often can contribute to weight gain. They can also cause tooth decay, especially if eaten between meals.

Free sugars are any sugars added to foods or drinks, or found naturally in honey, syrups and unsweetened fruit juices and smoothies. This is the type of sugar you should be cutting down on, rather than the sugar found in fruit and milk.

Many packaged foods and drinks contain surprisingly high amounts of free sugars.

More than 22. 5g of total sugars per 100g means the food is high in sugar, while 5g of total sugars or less per 100g means the food is low in sugar.

Eating too much salt can raise your blood pressure. People with high blood pressure are more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke. Even if you do not add salt to your food, you may still be eating too much.

About three-quarters of the salt you eat is already in the food when you buy it, such as breakfast cereals, soups, breads and condiments. Use food labels to help you cut down. More than 1. 5g of salt per 100g means the food is high in salt.

Adults and children aged 11 and over should eat no more than 6g of salt ( about a teaspoonful ) a day. Younger children should have even less.

As well as eating healthily, regular exercise may help reduce your risk of getting serious health conditions. It’s also important for your overall health and wellbeing.

Read more about the benefits of exercise and physical activity guidelines for adults. Being overweight or obese can lead to health conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, heart disease and stroke. Being underweight could also affect your health.

Most adults need to lose weight by eating fewer kcal. If you’re trying to lose weight, aim to eat less and be more réactive. Eating a saine, balanced diet can help you maintain a healthy weight.

Check whether you’re a healthy weight by using the BMI healthy weight calculator. Start the NHS weight loss plan, a 12-week weight loss guide that combines advice on healthier eating and physical activity. If you’re underweight, see underweight adults. If you’re worried about your weight, ask your GP or a dietitian for advice.

You need to drink plenty of fluids to stop you getting dehydrated. The government recommends drinking 6 to 8 glasses every day. This is in addition to the fluid you get from the food you eat. All non-alcoholic drinks count, but water, lower fat milk and lower sugar drinks, including tea and coffee, are healthier choices. Try to avoid sugary soft and fizzy drinks, as they’re high in kcal. They’re also bad for your teeth.

Even unsweetened fruit juice and smoothies are high in free sugar. Your combined total of drinks from fruit juice, vegetable juice and smoothies should not be more than 150ml a day, which is a small glass. Remember to drink more fluids during hot weather or while exercising.

Some people skip breakfast because they think it’ll help them lose weight. But a saine breakfast high in fibre and low in fat, sugar and salt can form part of a balanced diet, and can help you get the nutrients you need for good health.

A wholegrain lower sugar cereal with semi-skimmed milk and fruit sliced over the top is a tasty and healthier breakfast. Further informationThe Eatwell Guide can help you get the right balance of the 5 main food groups. The guide shows you how much of what you eat should come from each food group. Read more about eating a balanced diet and understanding calories.


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