Lately when I talk with my clients about how to eat healthy for depression or just weight loss, thing I tell them is they can't eat anything that comes out of a window. Phill Drolet did a wonderful blog about how to increase your resistance to the fast food lure. I've included his post here, and you can link to the original here.
How To Bulletproof Yourself from McDonalds & The Fast-Food Temptation
When we look back through history, there are some things our predecessors did that makes no sense at all now. Trying to cure diseases through blood-letting? Hunting for witches? Denying women the right to vote? That stuff was non-sense.
In 50 years, I predict that our grand-children will look back at our “Fast Food Era”, and wonder “What the hell were they thinking?!”
Let’s think about it for a second. We know fast-food is terrible for us, we know it makes us feel like crap, and we know it’s the enemy of the rocking body we desire. Yet, fast-food sales are going up each year, and McDonalds achieved record revenues last year.
I believe that as a society, we are failing big time.
How is this happening?
A big reason is fast food companies’ virtuoso marketing abilities. Seriously, these guys are good. But they’re sneaky.
Happy Meals, Ronald McDonald, kids’ games. It’s all rainbows & butterflies until you realize what they’re actually doing: brainwashing kids and subduing their parents in the process.
As we grow up, it’s not much better. With prices almost impossible to resist, the sheer number of fast food joints everywhere, and their propensity to be right there when we’ve had a few drinks (or puffs), how can we resist?
It’s possible. A little willpower, and some effective strategies go a long way. I never eat fast food anymore, and I don’t miss it a bit. For real. And I want to help you achieve the same.
Here are 11 tips that will greatly help become resistant to McDonalds & the fast food temptation.
1) Have a Kick-Ass Breakfast
You’ve heard it before: breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It gives you the energy to go out and rock you day, and it greatly reduces food cravings later on. I can assure you that when you walk by a Fast Food joint, that whiff of fatty food won’t be nearly as magnetic if you’ve had a good breakfast.
Try a superfood smoothie, a bowl of yogurt with berries, or wholemeal toasts with almond butter and sliced banana pieces.
2) Bring Healthy Snacks Wherever You Go
One of the reasons for Fast Food chains’ success is undoubtedly the convenience factor. We’re on the go, we get hungry, and we see the golden Arches looming in the distance. What happens? We flinch and get a little something.
The remedy is simple: bring some healthy snacks in your car, purse, backpack. My favorite? A home-made trail mix of goji berries, almonds, and dried cranberries.
3) Re-Watch Supersize Me with a Critical Eye
The first time we watch this documentary, it’s so entertaining to follow Morgan Spurlock’s adventures that we don’t fully grasp the implications of the experiment he conducts. Junk food, from a nutritional standpoint, is pretty much poison. It’s like intentionally throwing gravel into your body’s gas tank. Why the hell would you want to do that?
4) Pack a Lunch
Remember when you were a kid and brought a lunch to school? Why can’t we do that as grown ups? It’s a habit most of us used to have, so here’s a trick to re-ignite it: Challenge yourself to bring your lunch to work everyday for the next 30 days. I guarantee by the end, you’ll have realized how easy it is.
Oh, and you’ll save a fair bit of change too. 30 days at $6-8/lunch is more than $200. That’s $2400+ per year. I’m sure you can think of a thing or two to do with that kind of extra money…
The secret to easy lunches? Whenever you cook at home, make larger portions, and keep the leftovers for the next day’s lunch.
5) Carry a Water Bottle
Because hunger and thirst are regulated by the same part of the brain, the hypothalamus, it’s common to think we’re hungry when we’re actually mildly dehydrated.
The solution is easy: wherever you go, take a water bottle with you. And if you get bored with drinking water, try adding a slice of lemon. It’ll make it tastier, and help keep your body in an optimal energy (alkaline) state.
6) Start Eating Sushi
For some, sushi can be acquired taste but trust me, once you get used to the difference textures and flavors sushi provides, it’s a sensory experiences unlike any other.
And the best part? It’s an easy, healthy alternative to fast food joints. Sushi places are popping up everywhere, and you can get yourself a tasty, fresh, and healthy meal for under 10$.
7) Hang Out with Healthy-Minded People
To a large degree, we are the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with. If you’re strolling through town with your friends and they decide to go to McDonalds, it makes it super hard to resist.
But if you’re rolling out with your health-minded friend and they suggest you try a new organic restaurant in town, you’re opening yourself up to a whole new experience while doing your body good.
8) Connect to Your Higher Self
Next time you’re on the verge of, simply ask yourself: “What would the best version of myself do”? If you’re reading this site, I assume you’re interested in living your best possible life. And you know Fast Food is terrible. Let’s do the math here. Sometimes we just need our “best self” to remind us of how we truly want to live our life.
9) Educate Yourself on the Dark Side of the Fast Food Industry
When we look under the covers, the Fast Food Industry is a dark and twisted world. Behind the smiles, toys & colorful restaurants, the Fast Food Industry is fucking up the world we live in so many ways. The more we understand how this all works, the greater our power to resist & fight back.
If you really want to understand the Fast Food game, I recommend you pick up the book Fast Food Nation, or watch the movie adaptation.
10) Look at Nutrition Facts in the Face
Have you ever stopped to think about the nutritional content of a typical fast food meal? If you haven’t, let me give you a hint. It’s not pretty. A blatant example, the famous Big Mac meal. One of these bad boys contains:
- 1350 Calories
- 194g of carbs (almost all refined carbs – hello energy crash)
- 54g of fat (14g of artery-clogging Saturated Fat)
- 30g of protein
- plus an ungodly amount of sodium, additives, and other weird chemicals that should never enter the human body.
To put this in perspective, to burn 1350 calories you’ll have to run a hefty 9.5miles/15.2km. Have fun with that
11) Vow Out of Fast Food
The easiest way to bulletproof yourself against fast food? Simply commit to never eating fast food again. Plain and simple.
Why would you give your money to a company that is making you and your fellow humans unhealthy, makes you feel like crap, and is creating so many problems in the world?
I vowed out of fast food 6 months ago, and I haven’t looked back since. I sincerely hope you do the same, and overcome the fast food machine.
And when you grandkids ask you about this fast food craze that happened back in “our” days, you can tell them proudly you were one of the smart ones who said no to that nonsense