Creating a healthy lifestyle often feels overwhelming. With access to virtually unlimited information we are likely to find something new to stress about almost every time we open a social media account or turn on the news. Today I'm happy to bring you some health news to lighten that load.
1). Cut the Carbohydrate guilt
Carbohydrates are a dirty word in the health and wellness industry. We have been repeatedly told that they are making us fat and causing gut inflammation. Wellness gurus everywhere gush about a gluten free diet and encourage us to eliminate our bread habit. However, federal dietary guidelines recommend that 45-65% of our daily calories come from carbohydrates. Our bodies need fuel, and carbs are the primary way we have enough energy to enjoy a productive day.
If you're looking to lose some weight then try carb cycling or timing your carbohydrate intake with your workouts. Enjoy your carb heavy meals on days when you have a more strenuous workout planned. Consuming carbohydrates on your most active days will keep your brain sharp and give your body the fuel it needs to optimize your workout. You will be better able to put on muscle and improve your overall fitness level. Save your light eating for days when you also have light physical activity. If you'll be sitting at a desk all day then your productivity and energy won't suffer from a low carb diet and you won't have to worry about the extra calories building up around your waistline.
2). Drink your coffee in peace
I'm not quite sure how coffee has been given such a bad name in the health industry. I'm constantly hearing people lament about how they "drink too much coffee" or brag about how they have managed to switch to some gross energy drink. The truth is that coffee is delicious and it has a ton of health benefits. As long as you're drinking actual coffee and not a 500 calorie, sugar filled white mocha then you really have nothing to worry about as far as your health is concerned. Here are just a few of the numerous coffee benefits that have been proven by science:
- 1Coffee contains an antioxidant boost that fights aging and inflammation.
- 2It increases your metabolism and helps burn fat.
- 3Coffee improves your mental and physical performance.
- 4A cup or two a day can lower your risk of heart disease, diabetes and Parkinson's disease.
- 5This delicious drink even fights against depression.
3). Drinking the occasional Diet Soda Won't kill you
When diet drinks made their debut they were touted as the health savior we had all been waiting for. Companies promised zero side effects from their zero calorie beverages. It didn't take long for our bubble to burst as studies came out that caused growing concern for cancer, heart disease and unhealthy gut bacteria.
However, the truth about these convenient calories free beverages is that the studies around them have been inconsistent. The reality, like many areas of life, probably lies somewhere in the middle. If you crave the occasional soda or sweet tea, but you hate to ruin your diet with the sugar, then go ahead and enjoy a diet version. The studies are inconclusive and have suggested some reason for concern so don't indulge in more than one a day. However, you don't need to fear them as the cancerous killer we have all been warned about. There is no reliable research that shows a few diet drinks a week will hurt you.
so there you have it...
The health industry is full of scary statistics and confusing studies. I hope this information gave you reason to breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy a few of your favorite vices. You only have one life to live. Enjoy the time and try not to stress about the small things.