Words by Rosanna Lauria, Recipe for Health
My wedding day was one of the most exciting and fun days of my life.
Not only did I declare my love to the kindest, sexiest and funniest man I know, I was also able to have a remarkable time dancing and laughing with my family and friends that mean the world to me.
I felt amazingly calm on my wedding day – which I recognise is very rare! Sure, leading up to the event there were a few dramas, but I was committed to being completely present so I could enjoy every minute of the day. And I did!
A big part of this was eating a diet leading up to the day that not only gave me glowing skin so that I felt confident and carefree, but also balanced my mood, enhanced my energy and helped me burn fat leading up to the day. What more could a bride ask for?
Here are 5 nutrition tips that will have you looking and feeling like a winner on your big day.
1. Get off the sugar roller-coaster.
If you’re waking up and the first thing you put in your mouth is a high sugar meal or beverage (think white bread, coffee with sugar, or a high-carb cereal) or if you’re eating nothing at all (yes, that’s bad too!) then you may find yourself hopping on the blood sugar roller-coaster. The problem with that is, your blood sugar either spikes or dips to an extreme level that puts stress on the body, switching on your fat storage hormones and causing inflammation. Inflammation can lead to undesired skin blemishes, acne or red spots, and of course fat storage hormones can undo all that hard work you’re putting in at the gym. To get off the sugar roller-coaster and promote glowing skin and a body that doesn’t store unwanted fat, start your day with a low-GI breakfast with protein and some good fats. Try a smoothie with berries, spinach, chia seeds and nuts. Or whip up some eggs with mushroom, kale and avocado. This way of eating will also reduce fatigue and mood swings!
2. Eat detox foods
If you find yourself with fatigue, skin problems, brain fog, hormonal imbalances or a slow metabolism, your liver could be crying out for help! The liver is known as the ‘mother’ organ of the body and is responsible for filtering out all the ‘bad stuff’ (i.e., toxins) from your body so your body can be free to function normally. The problem is, in today’s society, we consume so many toxins (not just in our food but also in our skin care and in the air around us) that our livers are over-loaded. This can cause lethargy, fat storage and even mental health problems because of the connection with your mood balancing hormones. If you want to do a full detox where you eliminate certain food groups, speak to your health practitioner to ensure the detox you choose is going to be safe and effective for you. However, if you want to continue your standard diet but just make a few simple changes, then start introducing ‘detox foods’ including leafy green vegetables and beetroot, which are known to boost detoxification and help the body cleanse itself of unwanted toxins. Also, drink plenty of water, which will not only help remove those toxins faster, it will also give your skin a hydrated glow. Super simple!
3. Swap it, don’t stop it!
Need to shed a few kilos fast? As you inch closer to your magical day, I don’t want you to feel like you’re depriving yourself, which can often be the case when we try reduce unhealthy foods in our diet. Instead, think ‘swap it, don’t stop it’.
So what does that mean? Simply put, on your next coffee catch up, ditch the coffee, milk and sugar combo (which also increases anxiety due to caffeine being a stimulant!) and order a herbal tea. Or swap the sandwich / carb-filled lunch for a salad with some quinoa or chick peas, so you’re filling up on fibre but likely consuming less calories. Feeling peckish in the afternoon? Put down the bag of potato chips and grab some sweet potato or kale chips from your local supermarket or health food store. Those are some ideas and to discover what else you can swap, review your average day’s diet and look at which foods are not promoting health for you. Then write down what you’ll swap it with.
Need more ideas? Simply google or email firstname.lastname@example.org and I can give you some tailored ideas!
4. Beauty foods
When I think of ‘beauty foods’, the group that always stands out for me is foods high in omega-3 fats. That’s because omega-3 fats have been shown to decrease inflammation, and can reduce the risk of acne and other skin problems by decreasing insulin-like growth facto Omega-3 foods have also been shown to increase mental focus, memory and help balance mood. Add some wild salmon or sardines to your lunch, or add those chia seeds to your morning smoothie for a beauty skin concoction. You can also ask your health practitioner about fish oil supplements.
5. Eat “happy foods”
When you’re approaching your big day, the last thing you want is to be stressing out – not only will you feel crap (sorry for the blunt delivery…) but that stress will begin to show up in the thinning of your hair and in the blemishes on your skin. So be sure to take time out each day to do some deep breathing which is proven to calm the nervous system and reduce stress hormones – YAY!
But on the food side of the equation, introduce more ‘happy foods’! Most women think of unhealthy versions of cake or chocolate when we talk about comfort foods. Maybe even a glass (or 3) of wine. But there are so many natural alternatives now to these delicious treats. Visit your local health food store and grab some all-natural sugar free chocolate bars, with natural cacao powder, which will boost your happy hormones. Cacao also helps strengthen nails and promotes shinier hair because of the sulfur found in raw cacao.
Other foods shown to increase serotonin levels and boost mood include turkey, eggs, pineapple, salmon, nuts and avocado. (Add those nuts and avocado to that breakfast smoothie, and this smoothie is looking like a real winner!)
Good luck with these tips that will help you feel and look your best on your wedding day.
But remember above all else, relax and be present so you can really enjoy your wedding day. Some things may not go to plan, but the main purpose of your wedding is to simply marry the man of your dreams and enjoy your magical day with family and friends. If you do that, your day was successful!
So if it rains, or if the colours of your flowers aren’t perfect, that will not – I repeat, that will not – impact your ability to marry your man!
All the best, and if you need any help, email me at email@example.com
Rose Lauria is a Yoga & Meditation Teacher, Health Coach (IIN) and Founder of www.recipeforhealth.com.au.
Taking back control of her health after battling chronic fatigue, Rose helps people overcome the pressures and overwhelm of their busy life, so they can achieve their goals without sacrificing their health.
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