Did Your Diet Explode on July 4th?

All across the country people celebrated Independence Day with parties, fireworks and time with friends and family. As fun as they are, holidays like the 4th of July are very common times for people to fall off the wagon when it comes to their diets and fitness routines. But, slipping up (even a few times) over the holiday week doesn’t have to completely unravel all the progress you’ve made.

Here’s what to do if fireworks weren’t the only thing to blow up over this holiday week.

Acknowledge your slip up and move on. What’s done is done. Acknowledge that everyone, including you, is going to slip up once in a while. You’ll only set yourself up for personal disappointment if you expect perfection 100% of the time. If you live a generally healthy lifestyle, a short period of veering off track won’t turn you into an out of shape slug. Beating yourself up and wallowing in guilt will only prolong your episode and put more time and space between you and your overall healthy habits. In fact, a negative mindset has just as detrimental an effect on your body as eating bad food.

Don’t give in to your false hunger: Indulging in unhealthy, high carb or sugary foods can actually give you a food hangover. This is very likely to happen if you’ve been following a healthy diet for some time. Eating junk food will cause your blood sugar levels to spike and drop dramatically. So, initially you’ll feel full or even stuffed. What follows that is often a feeling of “false hunger” when your blood sugar level drops again that will tempt you to eat more unhealthy foods. Make sure you have nutritious and healthy foods on hand to eat instead.

Get some exercise: Nothing helps you get back on track and in the right mindset more than a good workout. Within 10 minutes of starting your workout, your heart will pump more blood to your brain and your muscles, so you can’t help but to feel energized. Getting in a sweat session will remind you how good it feels to move your body and help you get over the toxic emotions that may linger after a binge.

Get back to normal eating. The worst thing you can do after a binge is to restrict your calories. While many people are inclined to “swear off eating” or severely reduce their food intake to make up for cheating, this actually does much more harm than good. The absolute best thing you can do is resume your normal eating habits. Eat solid meals of nutritionally dense foods and load up on lean protein, fiber, vegetables and healthy fats.

Drink extra water. Water is a powerful weapon and essential for detoxifying. So, drink extra water to help flush the contaminants out of your system and help your body naturally get rid of leftover waste. Upping your H2O will reduce fluid retention and naturally make you feel less bloated.

Make a meal plan. Make sure your kitchen is stocked with all the ingredients you need to pick right back up in your healthy lifestyle in the coming week. Plan as many of your future meals as you can and be sure to include all of your favorite nutritious and delicious natural foods to remind you of how good it feels to live healthfully.

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