Seeing healthy eating as a ‘diet’ is a sure-fired way to make yourself feel rubbish if you happen to eat something that isn’t ‘healthy’. In reality, being healthy is so much more than just eating food that is good for you all the time. Being healthy involves being kind to yourself, both physically and mentally.

Grame from Fitness Food and Travel is here to share his five tips for making 2017 your happiest and healthiest year yet.

 1. Don’t worry about the past

Okay, we all did it; we all overindulged over the festive period. However, what’s done is done. No matter how much you wish you didn’t, eating that extra mince pie on the 23rd when you didn’t need to, happened. As did consuming that extra cocktail on New Year’s Eve. But that’s life and life is for living!

 What’s important is that you get comfortable with the fact you enjoyed the festivities and move on. If you get hung up on the past, you’ll never get back to healthy ways. So don’t worry, what’s done is done. Now you can focus on creating healthier habits.

2. Small changes = big results

This is especially relevant if you were following quite a strict way of eating before the festive period. Chances are, if you try to jump back into your old routine it will be overwhelming and you’ll slip up again.

Instead, start introducing healthy diet changes in small quantities. Start by having a healthier breakfast or lunch, then after a couple of weeks, swap your afternoon snack for a healthier alternative (like fruit, nuts or seeds). Alternatively, your main aim may simply be to include vegetables in each meal throughout the day. This way the change won’t seem so great and you can get back to your old ways sooner rather than later without any slip ups Little changes make for the best results.

3. Plan, plan, plan

As is the case with any change, even the most seasoned health nuts will need a plan. Planning may seem boring but it gives you a clear structure to stick to. This doesn’t have to be meal planning; it may be the time-frame that you will move back into a healthier diet. For example, after three weeks, try to be eating healthy 70% of the time; after three weeks aim for 80% of the time; and by the end of the month 90% of the time.

Whatever the goal is for your diet, note down a clear plan on how you will get there and what you will change to achieve it. If this includes meal prep or planning, then great! Just make sure it’s suitable for you and your needs.

4. Once it’s gone, it’s gone

We all have some leftover food lying around the house after the holidays. The main thing to do here is to either accept that once you’ve eaten it, it’s gone and there will not be any more bought. Or, even better, simply throw it away and forget about it!

If we don’t have unhealthy foods within our reach to tempt us, then it’s far easier to get back to maintaining healthy habits. We’re less likely to go out and buy a pecan roulade than we are to eat the leftover one in the freezer. So just as you’re cleansing your body, cleanse you kitchen too! Stock up on healthy, nutritious foods and get rid of the temptations to give yourself a better chance of making healthy choices.

5. Get Social

In the tech world we now live in this may be achievable in more ways than one. Firstly, try to embark upon your transition to a healthier lifestlye with a friend or family. If you have someone at your side with the same goal it makes things much easier. You can talk about how you’re changing your diet, share recipes and even cook for each other!

Secondly, social media is a great motivator for diet changes. You can find inspiration for recipes, share your own photos or generally just talk about the best diet tips on social sites like Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. There’s a whole world out there to explore so get social and have fun getting back to healthy ways.

So there you have it, five easy to follow tips that will  help you to follow a healthy and happy lifestyle in 2017. Remember that the most important thing is to have fun and enjoy your lifestyle!