Embracing 40: Healthy Eating

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Food and I have have a strange relationship. I’ve never been over-weight, but then again, I have worked hard at my weight and health since I was ten years old. Yes, TEN. Isn’t that awful! I am an avid exerciser, in large part in order to keep my weight in check. And it usually works. But as I approached 40, and now as I embrace it, I look at yummy food and I gain a pound, or two!

I read several book this summer and fall about low-carb diets including (amazon affiliate links):

I bought into the idea, but was having trouble actually doing it… I love carbs. I love to bake. My daughter loves to bake. Don’t I deserve to eat delicious treats after running three miles?! Or after a student bites me?! Or heck, after the seventh IEP meeting in a week?! See my problematic thinking? The week before Christmas, I became desperate. I was several pounds away from my annual resolution to MAINTAIN my weight as I age. And the year was coming to a close.

And while I was able to complete 2015 on plan with my goals, it was a close call. I’m working on making some adjustments in the new year to keep my weight in check without such a dramatic finish. Here’s what IS working for me

1. The author of The 4-Hour Body suggested taking pictures of our food as a visual food diary. I’ve done that before and it has overloaded my phone with photos. But… what if I compile those photos into a collage at the end of the day? That way, I am being mindful about what I eat throughout the day AND at the end of the day. Done.

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2. Most diet plans talk about using a food diary to keep track of what you eat. I had taken care of that with my food photos, but it didn’t take into account the calories consumed OR my fitness levels. I looked at expensive fitness journals on line, only to find my perfect journal for $3.99 at Michael’s Craft Store (and I had a 50% off coupon!).

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3. I stumbled upon this article online “A Low Carb Diet Meal Plan and Menu that Can Save Your Life”. Even if the title is a bit dramatic, the article contains succinct advice and lists of eat and eat-nots. I even cut and pasted most of it and placed in into my journal where I can reference frequently! As you can see from my visual food journal, I am not yet at the point of eating all whole foods, but that is my goal! The convenience and portion sizes of pre-packaged protein drinks and bars are what I need at the moment, however, I hope soon to embrace a more paleo diet.

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And now that I’m back to my “ideal” weight, it’s time to eat a little more (of healthy, low-carb foods) to celebrate! I’m thinking banana oat cookies, almonds, and maybe some almond butter. 🙂

For those of you on this journey with me, what tips, tricks and tools have you used to help you with healthy eating in your 40s?


Are you also embracing 40 and beyond? Check out all of the posts in this series here.


PS: Don’t forget that today is the last day of the BIG TpT sale! My entire store is 20% off!


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  1. diana clarke says:

    I just turned 60 last year. I used Prep Dish and followed the paleo plan (there’s also a gluten free plan) for most of 2015. This year I am using Slender Kitchen’s vegetarian meal planning. (Going vegetarian in hopes my Dr will let me quit my cholesterol meds!) I found that meal planning for the week and doing most of the prep on the weekend was what saved me from bad food choices. I also wear a fitbit to track my steps and try to maintain my activity level. I work out at an Orange Theory Fitness studio – cardio and strength training. From my perspective, strength training is seriously one of the best things you can do to maintain your weight and fitness as you age chronologically. It’s also one of the easiest things to do at home with little or no equipment or costs. All the best to you. I enjoy your posts and the speech materials! Thanks!

  2. For me, rice has been my downfall as far as basic carbs. If I eat any rice in a meal, it stays with me for at least a week. In other words, I gain a bit of weight quickly and it takes time to get it to come off again. My ideal diet is meat, veggies, nuts, seeds, eggs, coconut oil, minimal processed meats/treats and lots of water. As far as tips and tricks: read “It Starts With Food” by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig and follow their Whole30 diet to the letter (the 30 days, plus the reintroduction time–you will learn a lot about yourself in the proess!), and sadly, there are no “tricks” to losing or maintaining a healthy weight. We just have to put on our big girl panties and deal with it. 😀

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