Beer or Ice Cream: The 3 Keys to Making Healthier Decisions

Beer or Ice Cream: The 3 Keys to Making Healthier Decisions

You’re at your wits' end. It's been a long day and you need to unwind. So, what shall it be? Ice cream or a nice, cold beer?

We’ve all been there and, usually, we blame poor willpower and lots of stress. However, the real issue is that our mental capacity to make rational, healthy decisions by this point in our day has been drastically reduced.

Throughout the day, you're on auto-pilot when it comes to making decisions. We make upwards of 5,000 decisions a day without even thinking twice. What time to wake up, what to wear, what route to take to the office, should I say hello to the stranger on the street, etc., just to name a few! Then we encounter the more complex, conscious decisions we have to make, like determining our life's purpose, who to marry, what type of career to pursue, and whether or not to have kids.

When we change anything about our lifestyle or diet, we’ve ultimately added many more conscious decisions to our day.

  • Should I have a NutriBlast or waffles for breakfast?
  • What ingredients do I use for my NutriBlast?
  • What time should I eat, before or after my workout?
  • Should I snack between meals?
  • Would Thai food be healthier than Italian?

Eventually our self control and patience wears out. To top it off, we may not be seeing the results we want. Then, you have to decide whether or not all the effort is worth it. The answer is usually, “Heck no,” and we dive back into old habits and foods filled with comforting sugar, fat, and salt.

What does a well-intended person do next? We’ve got a couple options:

1. Train Your Brain.

Scientists at Tufts University recently discovered that food addictions can be altered and we can actually increase our feelings of reward and enjoyment from healthier foods. When we become hungry, food cravings emerge and unhealthy options become more attractive. The study, published in Nutrition & Diabetes, discusses the importance of controlling hunger with high fiber, high protein, and low processed foods. Click here to learn more about how to curb your cravings.

2. Make healthier rebellion foods.

What if a NutriBlast was thought of as a treat? This Candy Bar Dessert Blast is filled with nutritious, unprocessed foods that are high in fiber, pant-based protein and healthy fats and still tastes deceivingly indulgent. Bring on the chocolate cacao nibs!

3. Simplify, simplify, simplify.

Managing stressors and to-dos in our lives may help decrease the number of conscious decisions we have to make. Take time to assess what's on your plate and see if there are things that you can take care of quickly, delegate to others, put off to a later date, or actually don’t need to address at all. Get the tasks out of your head or into a task management program.The less information our brain’s frontal lobe has to register, the more likely we are to make better, healthier decisions!

Registered Dietitian

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