relationship with foodHi folks, today we’re back for another edition of Ask a Health Coach! Erin is here sharing her strategies for making good health a priority during the pandemic, plus what to do when you feel like you’re putting in a lot of effort without a lot of reward and what she eats in a typical day. Got more questions? Keep them coming in the Mark’s Daily Apple Facebook Group or in the comments below.

Annie asked:

“I love the way I feel when I eat clean, but meal prepping always takes a backseat to all the other things I need to do, especially now that I’m working, parenting, and homeschooling. How do I carve out time to eat healthier?”

You’re not alone in feeling the pressure of doing it all. With all of our waking hours being consumed by work and family responsibilities, making time for the non-essentials like exercise and eating well (which I would argue are essential), seems nearly impossible.http://jamesmahmudrice.info/Time-Pressure.pdf‘>2 It turns out that their time constraints were an illusion.

The pressure of what we have time for and what we don’t has more to do with the things we assign value to rather than how many hours there are in a day.

That being said, everything we do in life is a choice – what we eat, say, and do, where we spend our energy and our money – they’re all choices. And, as you might guess, there are consequences of those choices.

There’s no doubt that your life is busier than ever right now. You’ve probably never worn more hats in your life, but instead of looking at food as an afterthought, or telling yourself you “don’t have the time,” I suggest you try giving it a little more attention.https://www.globalwellnesssummit.com/2020-global-wellness-trends/‘>4 But I get it. You’re diligently putting in the work, day after day, and not seeing the outcome you’re looking for.

There could be a few different factors at play here, but one you might want to consider is a phenomenon called discounting, which basically means that the more effort you put into something, the less valuable the reward becomes. In a study published in Cognitive Affective, and Behavioral Neuroscience, researchers had participants do two simple tasks that would be rewarded with a cash prize.https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Effort-discounting-in-human-nucleus-accumbens-Botvinick-Huffstetler/567db1262529ec7b9144269695314fe0f9e76b32‘>6 It’s the part of the brain that’s in charge of the reward circuitand is based on two essential neurotransmitters: dopamine and serotonin. So, in a nutshell, it’s just how we’re wired.

Does that mean you shouldn’t put in the effort? It depends. In general, I don’t subscribe to the typical diet culture where everything is weighed, evaluated, and overanalyzed. I opt for teaching my clients to have an effortless relationship with food where they eat satiating, satisfying, nutrient-dense meals when they’re hungry without micromanaging every detail.

But if you take pleasure out of reading labels and managing your macros as you’re doing, keep doing it. I’ve found that in situations where people actually enjoy the effort they put in, the journey ends up being more rewarding than the destination itself.

“I’ve been following Mark’s diet for several years and I love seeing posts about what he eats during the day. But what does your day look like?”

Let me start by saying that knowing what works for you and your body is nutrition gold. It really is. You can read every nutrition book in the world, follow dozens of “healthy” food bloggers and influencers, and copy Mark’s diet (or mine) to a tee, but since every human is unique — and responds differently to different foods, it’s important to know what works for you.https://www.businessinsider.com/what-is-the-best-diet-no-such-thing-2019-6.‘>8 Most nights you’ll find me with a grilled ribeye and plate of steamed veggies smothered in butter. Maybe a square or two of dark chocolate. But sometimes, I’ll have an evening where I partake in some good old-fashioned carbs and dairy. For me, nothing beats delighting in a few perfectly crispy, salty roasted potatoes accompanied by a thick dollop of rich, organic sour cream.

I know exactly how my body responds to foods like these. And armed with this information, I can choose to treat myself without any fuss or worry. I encourage you to find what works for you too. When you start your day with eggs and bacon do you feel satiated or starving? When you drink coffee are you wired or alert? When you indulge in carbs do you get sleepy or energized? Like I said, everyone’s different and no amount of researching how other people eat will give you the same answers as listening to your own body.

Got thoughts? Share ‘em in the comments below.

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The post Ask A Health Coach: How’s Your Relationship with Food? appeared first on Mark’s Daily Apple.

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Do you remember that post we did on being vegan and pregnant — and how much protein you need? Well, today, we have an example of a vegan lasagna recipe that is high in protein, full of veggies, and so tasty that the whole family will love it. Not to mention that it’s also something you can easily make ahead when you have time and then simply heat it up when you need dinner! This vegan lasagna recipe comes from The Everything Vegan Meal Prep Cookbook — which helps busy peeps learn how to prep an entire week’s worth of vegan…

The post Make-Ahead Easy Vegan Lasagna for the Whole Fam appeared first on Fit Bottomed Girls.

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One of the things I thought a lot about when pregnant with twins was food. Not only because my appetite was off the charts, but also because it was hard to imagine what dinnertime would look like once we added two newborns in to the mix. When I had my daughter, I learned (the hard way) that on many nights, even the simplest of dishes was almost impossible to cook — and maybe even harder to eat — when you had a little one cluster feeding or teething or going through a developmental leap or just needing extra comfort (read:…

The post The Meal Prep Approach That’s Great for Families appeared first on Fit Bottomed Girls.

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Today’s guest post comes from Abby Langer, registered dietitian and owner of Abby Langer Nutrition . Her philosophy is that it’s best to eat real food, not diet junk, and it’s the quality of your food that matters, not the calories. No wonder we jumped at the chance to have her share her thoughts on food prep! We all know that meal prep is one of the most convenient ways to make healthy eating a habit throughout the week. After all, it’s much easier to ignore your favorite restaurant down the road or the temptation to dive into the office…

The post How to Meal Prep Without Food Waste appeared first on Fit Bottomed Girls.

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