Food. We love it. There’s nothing better than getting together with family and friends for a delicious meal.
But sometimes pain interferes with your desire to eat. You may lose your appetite or you resort to quick and easy take away meals because you’re hungry but shopping or cooking feels beyond you at the moment.
The occasional missed meal or take away food is generally not so bad. But if it happens regularly you won’t get the necessary nutrients your body needs. And you could start to lose or gain weight. So what can you do??
We’ve put together some simple suggestions for managing your weight:
Seek advice – if you’re concerned about your weight, see your doctor or dietitian for information and guidance.
Find out more about nutrition and healthy eating – knowing what makes a meal healthy and what nutrients your body needs, can help you make better decisions about what you eat, how you cook and what you snack on. The Australian Government’s Eat for Health website has lots of useful information to help you.
Keep a food diary to help you track what you’re eating – it increases your understanding of what you’re eating, how much you’re eating, and can also highlight any problems – e.g. not eating breakfast.
Have a goal and work towards it, e.g. if you’re trying to lose weight, set a realistic goal and plan the steps that will help you reach that goal.
Exercise – even small amounts can boost your health and will also help you control your pain.
Get a good night’s sleep – not getting enough sleep is linked to weight gain.
Involve your family and friends – let them know what you’re doing so they can help support and motivate you.
Don’t deny yourself something you enjoy – if you love chocolate, allow yourself a small treat occasionally, but not too often. That way you’ll still get to enjoy that special something, and won’t feel like you’re deprived or missing out.
Take time to learn how to cook healthy, delicious meals. If you’re not a great cook, take lessons – from a friend, parent, neighbour, your local neighbourhood house. Even just learning the basics can give you more confidence in the kitchen, and before you know it you’ll be getting recipe ideas from the cooking shows on TV!
By making a commitment to eating better, you’ll find that your health, energy levels and general outlook will improve in leaps and bounds.
“A meal is the whole experience of getting together and sharing with friends. It is more than food.” – Jinny Fleischman
Originally written and published by Lisa Bywaters May 2018.