New Year’s resolutions you should be making — and keeping
According to Australia’s leading health professionals
With a new year just around the corner, many of us will make half-hearted resolutions to lose weight or exercise more, but the reality is that they’re all-too-often abandoned before the end of January.
We’ve teamed up with some of Australia’s leading diet and nutrition experts to provide some simple, practical and long-lasting changes you can make — and stick to — in 2015.
Make a positive swap
The green smoothie trend has been kicking about for some time now, and personal trainer Emily Skye says it’s got staying power — with good reason.
“This is fantastic because it’s a quick way for people to boost their intake of fibre, vitamins, antioxidants and cleansing greens, in a delicious and easy format that can quickly and easily become a daily habit,” she says.
Keep it simple
Cutting down on processed foods is one of the best things you can do for your body, says nutritionist and Papaya Australia ambassador Caitlin Reid.
“Aim to include more minimally processed wholefoods in your diet to nourish your body from the inside out,” she says.
You can try Caitlin’s salmon with papaya salsa recipe here.
Make small changes, and stick to them
“We sometimes try to make wholesale changes (particularly around New Year’s) and it can be shocking and unsustainable,” Cunico says. He suggests changing just one thing in your diet per week over the course of a month.
“Making one change a week for four weeks is totally within our control, and you may just be surprised by the results and continue to commit to small incremental changes.”
“Developing an understanding and curiosity of where food comes from is beneficial to both parents and children in leading a healthier lifestyle,” Mandy dos Santos, food scientist, nutritionist and Cenovis home economist, says.
“Initiate conversation with the farmer next time you visit the fresh food markets or fishmonger at the local fish co-op to learn more about the process of sourcing, and whether the produce is organic, biodynamic or sustainable,” dos Santos says.
“You can also learn when certain fruits and vegetables are in season.”
Dos Santos suggests resolving to involve your children (or partner) in the grocery shopping by giving them the opportunity to select between species of fish, cuts of meat, or fruits and vegetables. This will improve their connection with the food and likelihood of eating it without fuss.
Do DIY dressings and sauces
If you’ve resolved to make one small change to your diet every week, why not start by ditching sugar- and preservative-laden dressings and store-bought sauces in favour of a simple, homemade version?
“You’ll notice there are a lot of numbers in the ingredients listed on most sauce and dressings bottles,” chef Jodie Blight says.
“By making your own dressings and sauces, you’ll eliminate a lot of these additives (and the added sugar) from your diet, and your meals will taste instantly fresher.”
Blight’s secret is simply one part vinegar and three parts olive oil — that’s it! Visit her website for more healthy tips and tricks.
Gen Y nutritionist Rosie Mansfield understands that it’s impossible to be perfect 100 percent of the time, so she suggests following the “80/20 rule”:
“In 2015, try your best to make healthy choices 80 percent of the time, but feel free to indulge in your ‘naughty’ favourites for the other 20 percent of the time,” she says.
“A little of what you like is good for you, but moderation is key!”
Focus on fitness, not weight loss
“The fat will fall off if you’re doing the right kind of training.”
Marchese suggests working short, 30-minute intervals of high-intensity interval training into your gym routine at least three times per week to see results. It involves short intervals of high intensity exercise broken up with short periods of lower intensity exercise or recovery.