I was just asked to do this piece for Just Ask Marlene; the website that Wilhemina Models' head of the Junior Division has for girls and young women. It is not focused on girls who are or want to be models, but rather focused on healthy eating for all tweens on up; feel free to share it with any kids in your lives.
Spring Healthy Eating Tips
Here we are the sun is out and we are finally getting to shed our layers! Yeah! Here are some tips to feel fabulous and enjoy the beautiful warmer weather while eating sensibly and feeling good in your body.
1. Balance what you eat; Feed your body all the things it needs. Fruits, veggies, protein, calcium, carbs. Yes, carbs! Make sure to get some protein in your body at breakfast or lunch, so that you aren't starving by the end of school and more likely to eat junk food. If you hate breakfast, grab a cheese stick to eat on the way, or some peanut butter on a cracker. Eggs are great if you like them and they will 'hold' you all morning.
2.Try to eat oranges or grapefruit before you have to do your after school activities. This is what dancers do before class or a performance and will give you the energy your body needs, without leaving you feeling overly tired or starving. If you don't like oranges, try some other fruits like strawberries, peaches and plums. Then you will get the spurt of energy you need for your high energy activities.
3. Don't avoid foods you love. Don't deprive yourself of the treats you enjoy. Overly restricting food will boomerang by overeating or slowing your metabolism. Simply ask yourself this question: "Do I want it now, or later?" Remind yourself that you can have it, but only have it if you really want it.
4. Sometimes you can get in the habit of eating certain things,or enjoying eating with friends while hanging out together, even if you aren't that hungry, or even in the mood to eat that food. You can always eat it later, or enjoy your time with your friends laughing, talking and hanging out. Don't feel pressured to eat if they are.
5. Eat till you are done and comfortable, not necessarily full. Only eat when you are hungry and stop eating when you are no longer hungry. You will feel lighter and it will help flip the 'off swtich' which is hard to do with some foods like chips, peanuts, cookies.
6. Play a 'waiting game' if you want to cut down on any portion sizes. Remind yourself that you can have more later if you are still hungry.
7. Your body is hungrier some days than others. Don't sweat it if you have some days when you eat a lot more than usual. Try to eat more fruits, veggies and protein and you will naturally fill in the rest with less high calorie food that won't help your body much.
Most importantly, enjoy your food and get outside and move your body! You will feel great inside and out, and be ready for summertime. Happy Springtime!
Donna is psychotherapist and author of a great book "Take the Fight out of Food", she coaches people of all age on eating well for life. Visit her at: www.donnafish.com