This year I am on a mission to help improve the lives of women and the first place I am kicking things off is by sharing super simple ways to love yourself more and nourish your body. Today I am focusing on making your mornings happier and healthier with the following tips.
Part of healthy living for women is having a good daily routine and practising healthy habits that then become the structure of your life. These daily habits will help to keep you looking and feeling your best, and for the most part, are pretty easy to implement. Let's dive in and see how many you are already doing.
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Get Your Beauty Sleep
Sounds obvious I know. Not a lot of people know this but how much sleep you get each night has a direct affect on how hungry you feel and how easily you can resist food cravings.
This is due to two hormones that help regulate hunger—ghrelin and leptin. Both are affected by the quality of sleep you get each night. Ghrelin stimulates appetite, while leptin decreases it. When you are sleep-deprived (even from one night), the level of ghrelin spikes, while the level of leptin falls, creating an increase in hunger and food cravings.
Sleep loss also changes the timing and release of these two appetite-controlling hormones. The stomach secretes ghrelin, the hormone that signals the brain that you’re hungry. During sleep deprivation, ghrelin gets released in larger amounts. As you start eating, the body releases the satiety hormone, leptin, to start appetite suppression. However, when you are sleep deprived, leptin gets released in smaller amounts.
An imbalance of ghrelin and leptin, not only makes you feel hungrier but you've eaten, your body doesn’t recognise that it’s time to stop. This combination of increased hunger with decreased satiety leads to overeating and unwanted weight gain. (1) One of the best things you can do for your wellbeing is get a good night's sleep.
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Lemon Water Upon Rising
If you try nothing else, make sure you add this to your morning routine.
Lemon water gently flushes the system and despite being acidic, has an alkaline effect once consumed. It aids in better digestion, helps to improve your gut health and the natural elimination of toxins from your body. Citrus fruits are super loaded with vitamin C. In fact, just one cup of fresh lemon juice provides 187% of your daily recommended serving of vitamin C plus a healthy dose of potassium, magnesium and copper.
In addition to the nutrients, lemons have an alkalising effect on the body. Drinking lemon water can provide many of the same health benefits of alkaline water, helping to balance your body’s pH and optimise overall health. Lemon also help you lose weight by flushing out the toxins and reducing the appearance of cellulite.
Gratitude For Mental Happiness
Keeping a gratitude journal is an absolute game changer. Before you get up and start your day, this is a fabulous way to take stock of your life and celebrate what is working and the things you are grateful for. This in turn breeds positive emotions and helps attract more goodness into your life.
Sometimes, when we feel stuck or in a rut, we can collapse into those negative feelings. This is very true for those who suffer depression and anxiety. But starting the day off off on a positive note, being grateful for all we have around us, taking stock of all the good things and what things are working well can help us break the spiral and boost your mood.
Journalling is a great way to remind yourself things aren't as bleak as you may feel. I highly recommend investing in a pretty journal or notebook to practice this. I love this one by Jenny Mercher called Count Your Rainbows: A Gratitude Journal which guides you through the process with beautifully styled inspirational quotes and artwork coupled with thought-provoking prompts to help you positively acknowledge the people, things, and experiences in your life.
Another beautiful journal (pictured above) is by Pretty Simple Press called Good Days Start With Gratitude. Each week offers an inspirational quote, space to write 3 things you are thankful for each day of the week, and a weekly checkpoint. It's super pretty and a simple way to journal your gratitude.
This journal by Tiffany Louise called This Year I Will...: A 52-Week Guided Journal to Achieve Your Goals is awesome and gives you week-by-week prompts and questions to make sure you’ll never lose your way to becoming the person you want to be!
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Meal Prep Breakfast
They say it is the most important meal of the day, and if you are not practising intermittent fasting, I wholeheartedly agree. A healthy breakfast helps to control your appetite for the entire day and is the best way to fuel a happy, productive day of toddler chasing.
I recommend waiting 20 - 30 minutes after having your lemon water (above) before eating. Then choose a healthy, well balanced meal like nutrient dense smoothies, chia pudding or overnight oats. Fibre-rich foods are very slimming and when paired with protein help keep you fuller for longer. These suggestions are super easy to make and fast for those hectic mornings.
I've written a longer post on how to meal prep and you can find more on the topic here. Do you Pin? I have an entire Pinterest board devoted to smoothie making hacks and pre-made smoothie freezer bags top the list. A smoothie is how I usually start my day and kick start healthy eating with a hearty dose of phytonutrients, fibre and superfoods. It's easy peasy work on those crazy busy mornings when my Aspie son is fussing, and my hyperactive miss is doing loops of the lounge room, to just grab a freezer bag and drop the ingredients into a high-powered blender, blitz and go. Done. Click here for inspirations and clever how-to's.
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Look Forward To Dancing With Your Tribe
Plan your happiness. Do you ever find that being in the company of some people is just naturally mood shifting? You enjoy their companionship and lose track of time. These are the best people to surround yourself with to boost your mood and increase your happiness.
Happy people are contagious, so engaging with those that make you feel lighter, joyful and more inspired is going to elevate you in some way. When you leave their company, you'll bring that same light to others you interact with in your day. It's a trickle down effect and pretty amazing when you think about it. If you set your intention for the day to leave people happier than when you first found them, some flipping magic happens!
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When you do the same old same ol, it's no wonder you can be left feeling like you are in a rut or flat. Today, I want you to purposely mix up your morning routine by taking a new route to work or the kids' school. If you always head for the local park for a morning play, drive to the beach. Instead of your usual local coffee shop, walk the opposite direction and try that new one that just opened up down the road. If you are the type who avoids eye contact when passing others, push yourself to look up and smile.
HEALTH COACH TIP: Try adding the above suggestions to your current lifestyle. It is far better to practice preventive "medicine" than to leave things to chance and scramble once you get the sniffles. Eat healthy every day; sleep well and keep hydrated.
Put it into action. ...what are you going to try from this article?
Wishing you health + happiness,
Click to get your digital copy of the Gut Repair ebook. Inside you'll learn the causes of poor digestive health, what lifestyle change help improve it including the gut-friendly food checklist, and a gut-friendly 3-Day Menu with Recipes. Read more>>
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