healthy_eatingIf you are trying to lose pregnancy weight, chances are you’ve realised that eating junk food is not going to be on your to-do list.
But if you’re like many of us, you may have one or two vices that you find difficult to resist (hello Tim Tams).
Or perhaps it’s not that you can’t resist them, but more that once you have one or two you end up devouring the whole pack in one sitting; leading to feelings of guilt (not to mention nausea).
Today we have some tips that can help you to re-wire your brain so that the cravings and urges are reduced, and also to give you back some of the control that you may be lacking when it comes to unhealthy food so that you can lose weight after pregnancy.

Change the way you think

If you’ve always turned to a certain chocolate bar or biscuit when you are feeling unhappy / bored / tired / lonely / celebratory it’s time to break the pattern.
When you give food power – such as ‘I will feel so much better if I eat a Cherry Ripe’ then you are setting up a negative food association. A Cherry Ripe can’t make you feel better emotionally, what you really need to do is deal with the emotion that you are feeling head on.
So if you are reaching for the junk food when you feel unhappy, chances are you won’t feel much different half an hour later unless you do something about what is making you feel that way.
By realising that you have some negative food associations in your life, you are taking the first step to turning them off for good.

Find healthier alternatives

If there is something that you find hard to say no to (it could be one of those giant sugar and fat-filled muffins sitting on the counter in the local café) why not make your own healthier option such as these Carrot Cake Muffins.
By baking something at home and popping it in your bag, you won’t feel as though you are missing out on a treat.
Or if it is a bad habit such as eating chocolate in the afternoon when you are tired, why not have a batch of Date and Almond Energy Balls made at the start of the week so that you can grab one from the fridge to enjoy for your afternoon tea.

Don’t keep it in the house

If you keep a bag of Maltesers in the house when Maltesers are your #1 vice, there is a very good chance that you will eat them all, right? But if you had to get in the car and drive to the shop every time a Malteser craving hit, you would be much less likely to succumb.
You are setting yourself up for a fall if you keep junk food in the house.
The best option is to fill your fridge and pantry with healthy alternatives that you really enjoy so that you have plenty of options at hand.
For instance at the start of the week you could make a big batch of healthy beetroot hummus or chunky guacamole dip to keep in the fridge to enjoy with some carrot sticks for morning tea.

Make a rule

Our brain likes rules to follow, and it can be used to your advantage. So if you just decide that enough is enough and you want to go cold turkey on your vice, set up a rule such as ‘I don’t eat cheesecake.’
This is much easier to deal with than the ‘will I or won’t I’ situation that we often find ourselves in. Once we start arguing with ourselves in our minds, the battle is often already lost.
If this is too strict for you, it could be a softer version of the rule such as ‘I only eat cheesecake from a nice restaurant’. Then you know you can treat yourself if it’s on the menu (but you won’t buy a few packs of frozen Sara Lee cheesecakes to keep at home).
If junk foods seems to trip you up more often than not, why not give our Sugar Detox Challenge a go? Running throughout October, you can sign up here to give yourself the edge and kick those nasty temptations to the curb once and for all.