As the year comes to an end, we begin to look back on 2016 and develop New Year's resolutions for the following year. What can we do better in 2017? We have a desire to change to better ourselves and our well-being. Yet often times, we find ourselves making resolutions that do the opposite.
By changing the way we think of New Year’s resolutions, we can work to live a healthier life in 2017.
Resolution: “Stop eating carbs.”
Cutting carbs out of your diet completely is extremely difficult and could potentially have adverse effects on your diet. Carbohydrates are essential to life and are an extremely important source of energy. So please don’t cut carbs out of your diet completely.
Instead make your resolution: “I want to replace much of the simple carbs in my diet with complex carbs.”
Simple carbs are the “bad carbs”: soda, those Christmas cookies that you ate all last week, white bread, etc. While complex carbs take longer to digest and are rich in fiber, vitamins and minerals. Examples of complex carbs are whole grain foods, oatmeal, and vegetables.
Resolution: "Exercise every day."
When you set a lofty goal, such as exercising seven days a week, you’ll become easily discouraged when you realize how unattainable your resolution is.
Instead make your resolution: “I want to increase the frequency of my fitness routine.”
This is a more realistic goal that you can adjust throughout the year as you become more comfortable and disciplined with your fitness routine. By setting a more attainable goal, you’ll be less likely to give up.
Resolution: "Lose 15 pounds by next month."
If you’re looking to set a weight loss goal, give yourself time. Make strides to live a healthier lifestyle, which will lead to weight loss.
Instead make your resolution: “I want to work to burn more calories than I eat.”
Losing 1 to 2 pounds per week is a perfectly healthy and attainable weight loss goal. In order to attain this goal, you must have a caloric deficit of approximately 500 to 1,000 calories. For example, if you’re consuming 2,000 calories per day, you need to burn 2,500 calories.
Resolution: “Quit [bad habit], cold turkey.”
It doesn’t matter what your bad habit is, quitting cold turkey will only leave your body wanting more. If you want to stop a bad habit, it’s better to wean yourself off of it than abruptly stop all together.
Instead make your resolution: “I want to gradually stop doing [bad habit].”
Quitting a bad habit cold turkey will likely make you feel deprived of such habit, making your cravings all the more real. Instead, work to reduce the amount of times you do that bad habit. For example, if you want to stop ordering pizza every weekend, limit yourself to ordering pizza once a month. That way, you’re still letting yourself experience the bad habit every now and then, and eventually, those pizza cravings will lessen.
Resolution: “Go on a detox cleanse.”
Many detox cleanses, such as three or five day juice cleanses, often deprive your body of the nutrients that it needs. Though most participants do experience weight loss, it’s just water weight and you will gain it back. If you truly feel the need to detox after the holiday season try a one-day cleanse.
Instead make your resolution: “I want to make smarter diet decisions.”
You can detox your body 24/7 by making smarter diet choices. Gradually changing your diet so you are mainly eating clean foods, drinking 64 ounces of water per day, and getting enough sleep will ultimately have you detoxing on a regular basis.