The beginning of the New Year arrives with exciting possibilities as to what lies in store for us in the upcoming year. It provides us with a reset button, and health and happiness are usually at the top of the list. Weight loss is about learning to think differently about food and WW provides many of the tools needed to help with this transition. These 10 suggestions are simple tips and ideas to help make healthy and empowered decisions about the foods you eat.
Look Beyond the Scale
The WW app is a great way to track your SmartPointsTM, FitPointsTM and emotional fulfillment as key areas of focus for optimum health and happiness. You’ll be able to save recipes and snacks so that they can be easily added to your daily food log. Thousands of WW recipes and articles will help you to cook tasty and satisfying meals
Box of snacks
When hunger strikes we often reach for the closest snacks for the sake of convenience rather than their nutritional value. Help combat this predicament by keeping an ample-sized container full of healthy and filling snacks that can be grabbed with ease and eaten as needed. Cut up fruit and vegetables, single servings of hummus, Greek yogourt, cottage cheese, and lean meats are all great choices, allowing you to mix and match healthy fats, proteins, and complex carbohydrates to fully optimize your snacking habits
Revisit the classics
Perhaps you have a collection of favourite family recipes, or maybe you have stacks of well-worn cookbooks full of recipes you love, but that might not be ideal in terms of fitting into your daily SmartPoints plan. Rather than bidding these beloved recipes goodbye, use your knowledge of the WW SmartPoints system as a framework for revisiting recipes you might have considered off-limits when you began your weight loss journey. As you experiment keep notes of what works and what doesn't, you might even end up improving on a classic!
Get inspired by cooking from around the globe
Whether you prefer browsing food blogs, collecting cookbooks or scrolling through the WW recipe database, you’ll find there's a huge variety in the realm of international cooking and baking. Find inspiration in vibrant Indian curries and cooling yogourt sauces, Israeli dishes tasting of bright, fresh ingredients and smooth earthiness, or beautiful Scandinavian breakfast boards that look as pretty as a picture out of a magazine. You'll find that many dishes from around the world are full of dishes both savoury and sweet that fit neatly into your SmartPoints plan.
Small rewards along the way serve as both an incentive and a reminder of the goals you're actively accomplishing. When you meet personal milestones, make sure that you treat yourself to something pleasurable that is separate from your weight loss efforts, whether it’s a day at the spa, a new book, and a bubble bath, a night at the movies or a new pair of running shoes.
Take a half hour to prep all of your fruits and vegetables for the week each Sunday, and you’ll be amazed at how much more likely you are to reach for a healthy option if it’s just as convenient as a less-than-healthy option. Stir fries and pasta sauces will come together in minutes with a selection of pre-sliced sweet peppers and broccoli, butternut squash soup will require little more than some good chicken stock and sectioned citrus fruits will provide a sunny dose of vitamin C during the winter months.
Use your pantry
A well-stocked pantry is a midweek saviour when it’s nasty outside, and the fridge is bare. Focus on a couple of recipes that can be made quickly and easily, and that only require a few ingredients to make. Olive oil, diced tomatoes, dried pasta, shallots or other types of onions, dried herbs, chilies, garlic, dried beans, soba noodles, coconut milk and curry paste are all excellent staples that can quickly come together to form a delicious dinner for one or for many.
Join a cooking class
Enrolling in a cooking class, whether at a community center or a school for the culinary arts, is a fantastic way to learn about cooking from a different perspective than your own. Immersing yourself in a new type of cooking will open doors for the types of food you make in your home. Instructional classes can provide inspiration for future recipes and can help with being a mindful cook as it’s not as easy to be thoughtless about cooking when you are trying something new.
Make half of your meal vegetables
Crowding your plate with vegetables and greens is a great way to add fibre and other powerhouse nutrients to a meal with only having a minimal effect on your daily SmartPoints target. A small amount of fat, such as olive or sesame oil, is optimal for nutrient absorption. Using fresh herbs, citrus juice, chili paste and soy sauce to dress vegetables before serving will add massive flavour.
When done by doubling up, batch cooking is an efficient way of preparing food that will leave your fridge and freezer crowded with soups, stews, casseroles, and marinated meats that travel from freezer to table without a second thought. Whenever you’re making a recipe that can easily be doubled (or tripled!) plan on cooking more than usual and then freeze the extra. Roast two chickens instead of one, shred the extra meat and freeze in plastic bags. Making breakfast bars? Double the recipe and freeze in parchment paper. There’s no end to the possibilities, and it hardly feels like work when you’re already cooking for that evening anyway.